The US government’s top continental European ambassador Richard Grenell urged the chairman of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s foreign affairs committee in the Bundestag not to sabotage the US effort to help Israel and Palestinians reach a peace agreement. Grenell, the US ambassador to Germany, tweeted on Wednesday to German MP Norbert Röttgen:”[Mahmoud] Abbas is in his 15th year of a 4-year term. The US didn’t cause this conflict but we are trying to solve it. Maybe some help?”
Röttgen, a MP for the Christian Democratic Union party, had tweeted, “The so-called #PeacePlan is to the detriment of #Palestine and presented as an ultimatum depicts a setback in the conflict. It is primarily a contribution to the ongoing election campaigns in the #USA & #Israel and a welcome diversion from domestic crises in both states.”
Röttgen is not known as an expert on the Middle East.
Writing an opinion article for Fox News, Eugene Kontorovich, a scholar and lawyer at the Kohelet Policy Forum, a Jerusalem-based think tank, wrote, “Claims that the plan’s release was timed to impact either President Trump’s domestic difficulties or Netanyahu’s reelection are demonstrably false. Democrats have had Trump under investigation since his first days in office, and Israel has been in an unprecedented series of failed elections for a year, with no clear end in sight.”
In July, the distinguished Jewish historian Dr. Michael Wolffsohn alleged in a 2019 commentary that Röttgen is working to undermine efforts to stop the growth of the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions campaign targeting Israel. The Bundestag classified BDS as antisemitic in March.
“A minority of members of the Bundestag coalition and opposition wants to prevent [a] financial implementation of the anti-BDS decision of our elected representatives,” wrote Wolffsohn, citing Röttgen.
Commentators like the former Labor MK Dr. Einat Wilf noted on Twitter that many Arab countries are welcoming and embracing Trump’s Peace Plan, while Westerners are stoking anti-Peace agendas.
“The greatest tragedy and irony is that at [the] precise moment that parts of the Arab world are moving away from their support for Palestinian maximalism and virulent anti-Zionism, in the West some insist on continuing to fuel the conflict by telling the Palestinians to keep fighting,” wrote Wilf on Twitter.
Writing for The Daily Wire, Josh Hammer said, “Numerous Arab governments, furthermore, have offered public endorsements of Trump’s plan that invariably refer to it as a welcoming or promising development.”
The German Green Party, which has been plagued by allegation of mainstreaming antisemitism, lashed out at the Trump peace plan. Omid Nouripour, the foreign policy spokesman for the Green Party in the Bundestag, said, “The Trump plan does not bring peace, but escalates risk. Not only in the West Bank and Gaza, but also in Israeli society. Trump suggests that Israeli Arab cities be swapped to the State of Palestine if they swap territories. It is a contribution to the ethnic division of Israeli society.”
Nouripour helped initiate an anti-Israel document in the Bundestag to sanction Israeli products in 2013. He denies that he supports the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions campaign targeting Israel. BDS advocates labeling of Israeli products.
Dr. Elvira Groezinger, Deputy President of Scholars of Peace in the Middle East, German Section, Secretary of the SPME International Board, told The Jerusalem Post, “Nouripour, Iranian-born foreign policy spokesman of the Green Party with a double citizenship, bears a grudge against the US after he was one of the deputies who was not let into the country in 2017.” She added, ”No wonder that as an Iranian subject, he now backs the Mullahs, speaks on behalf of the Palestinian Arabs only, and attacks the peace plan as a contribution to an ethnic schism of the country, pleading at the same time for a two-state solution. I wonder if he does this on behalf of a Kurdish state as well. But given this biographical and legal status, his biased and one-sided opinion is neither serious, nor constructive or relevant in my eyes.”
German-Iranian dissidents have criticized Nouripour over the years for showing sympathy toward Iran’s radical clerical regime. Groezinger, who speaks fluent Hebrew, added that Röttgen “actively supports the phantom [Iran] nuclear ‘treaty’ with Iran.”